The highly awarded designer and creative retoucher, Marcus Byrne, showcases his 3D Type series and recent creative projects on Design Montage today. He currently works as the Senior Designer and Creative Retoucher at George Patterson Y&R, Melbourne.
Marcus began his career in Dublin, in a small ad agency as designer and art director on Guinness, Sprite and Budweiser accounts. He also worked across branding and designing corporate identities as well. After five years, he decided to leave Ireland to travel and work abroad.
On a photography journey throughout Asia, South America and India, Marcus freelanced in Sydney and NZ between trips to fund travel. Taking photographs all around the world has been a major creative influence for Marcus and led him to eventually settling in Melbourne.
Now, let’s talk about creative projects. Marcus’ 3D Type Series was featured in a few publications which led to a cover art. He was honoured to be asked to create the cover art for the international Advanced Photoshop Magazine and write a four page tutorial on the 3D tools within Photoshop CS6 Extended.
Marcus was the designer and retoucher on Mobile Medic campaign for the Australian Defence Force. Mobile Medic was the most awarded Australian entry at Cannes last year, picking up heaps of Gold Lions as well as picking up awards at every other major international award shows.
Tell me about your creative journey. Where or when did you discover your passion for design and photography? And, how have you kept that passion alive?
Dad had a screen printing business growing up. I must have been about five or six when I discovered Letraset. You know the rub down lettering? This was my first introduction to type and graphic design. And, I loved it.
During my teens I was into skateboarding. The illustrations from independent artists that defined the identity of skateboarding culture had a great influence on me. Then in Art College, music and the friends I made certainly had a huge influence on my creativity.
Art and design runs in my family. Two family members are recognised Photographers and there are a few successful graphic designers, writers and photographers working in London, NZ and France.
Travel Photography is another pastime, you get to meet some really interesting people along the way. Travel and being out of my comfort zone is the best source of inspiration for me. Although I started my career as a print designer and art director, I now work across digital, motion graphics, 3D, photography and creative retouching.
As a music lover, I also create music and make music videos. With software advancing at a rapid rate, it’s hard to keep up with so many areas so my main focus now is design for any medium, creative retouching and particularly 3D Typography.
In a few words, describe yourself…
Patient, easy going, versatile, motivated, love to learn.
What are you spending your time on at the moment?
I recently finished a design/montage print piece for the amazing Justus Magazine. I also have a new typography project with a music and lyrics concept on the go.
Tell me about your creative process. How does your creative process differ in your role as a digital artist, compared to your work in advertising?
Personal projects and commercial projects couldn’t be more different and I manage them in completely different ways.
On a day-to-day basis in agency land, I work within a team environment where clients, briefs and deadlines play a major role in the process. On personal projects, I tend to work best late at night when the air is calm and distractions are at a minimum. I also find it very important to create personal deadlines.
If it’s a big creative retouching job, I like to have distractions and interruptions at a minimum. Music through noise cancellation headphones certainly help me get in the zone.
Tools of the trade.
Layout pad, pencils, music, Mac and Wacom tablet. Oh, and water, coffee and peppermint tea for the late nights.
What or who inspires you?
People, ideas, conversations, travel and music. I love when a random conversation turns into a physical piece of work and when an idea blossoms to become something that people take part in. One of my favourite websites is TED.com. Always inspiring.
What are you most proud of?
When travelling through India, I had an idea for a music video for one of my favourite artists, guitar legend Preston Reed. I shot footage while travelling on the trains through rural India. When I returned about four months later, I finished editing the video and sent it to Preston.
He loved it so much that he decided to use it as an official video. After that, he asked me create another video. We met up and I shot footage of his amazing skills and created a video. Both videos have since become huge YouTube hits.
It’s certainly the self initiated projects where I have full creative control that I feel most proud of.
Professionally and personally, I have been very lucky to have had the opportunity to travel and work in some really amazing cities around the world while making great friends in the process.
When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Apart from wanting to get in a rocket and go to space. Art and technology have always been at the forefront of interests so it’s not surprising that I do what I do.